Body found in Robeson County during missing person search

RED SPRINGS, N.C. (WTVD) -- A body was found in Robeson County on Monday while investigators were conducting a missing persons search.

The Robeson County Sheriff's Office said the body was found off of Tom M Road near NC710 between Rowland and Pembroke.

That's in the general area where detectives have been searching for 42-year-old Jessica Lawrence.

The sheriff's office said it has obtained Lawrence's DNA for comparison to the body found Monday. Investigators have also spoken with family members about obtaining Lawrence's dental records.

Her disappearance has been called suspicious and likely unlawful by the sheriff and investigators said they have reason to believe foul play was involved.

Last week, North Carolina search and rescue teams from state emergency management were searching for her on Hubbard Road near Rowland.

Lawrence was last seen at her home on Coy Road in St. Pauls, North Carolina, on Sept. 26. She was first reported missing by a family member on Oct. 12.
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Eighteen days after Jessica Lawrence was last seen, investigators found a registered sex offender driving her car.

On Oct. 14, investigators found Lawrence's 2019 Jeep Grand Cherokee in Red Springs being driven by someone else 42-year-old Michael Brayboy.

He was arrested and charged with failure to report a change of address by a sex offender. He was booked into the Robeson County Detention Center on a $1.5 million bond.

"We can't discuss details of where the investigation is at this point but many leads have been established and evidence has been obtained," Sheriff Burnis Wilkins said. "We are asking for the public's assistance in regards to anyone that observed Brayboy in the vehicle described or may have seen him with Lawrence around September 26-27, 2021 to come forward."

If you have information that might help, call Robeson County Sheriff's Office at (910) 671-3170.
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